Cape Verde’s opposition faults handling of Alex Saab’s case by government

The African Independence Party of Cape Verde (PAICV)  has accused its  government for the lack of transparency, amateurism and the inability to deal with files involving Venezuelan diplomat, Alex Saab who has been in their custody since last year.

By this action, PAICV,  the largest opposition party, alleged that the country’s permanent national objectives and image were in serious jeopardy. 

PAICV in a statement on Wednesday said they understand that it cannot be hidden that Mr Saab’s case has captured the  interests involving other countries, leaving Cape Verde in a situation of “embarrassment and dilemma” in the face of any outcome of the case.

“Two facts add to this situation, which in no way endorses Cape Verde’s good image: the one that the Cape Verde Government has lost the ability to” manage complex and delicate files “that the process requires and that indicates foreign policy bewilder in the face of gravity of the dossier “, the PAICV statement quoted the Supreme Court of Justice to have said.

ALSO READ: ​ECOWAS Court to rule on Alex Saab’s case March 15

PAICV Secretary General, Julião Varela, said  the approach of the subject is “as touchy as it is complex”, which should deserve attention from the national authorities, so as not to tarnish the image of the country and capital diplomatic won since the independence of Cape Verde in 1975.

Saab’s controversy 

Mr Saab was arrested on June 12, 2020 during a stopover at Amilcar Cabral International Airport on the Island of Sal by the Cape Verdean government.

According to the Venezuelan government, the diplomat was on an humanitarian mission to Iran from Venezuela.

His arrest by the Cape Verdean government was hinged on an international arrest warrant purportedly issued by Interpol at the request of the United States.

The Venezuelan authorities have continued to call for Mr Saab’s unconditional release, adding that he had diplomatic immunity at the time he was arrested.

The ECOWAS Court had in its December 20, 2020 ruling ordered the Republic of Cape Verde to place Mr Saab under permanent home detention in good conditions, including access to medical treatment and visits.

The court also ordered that the applicant should not be extradited pending the decision of the court on the substantive suit.

Recently, the regional court on Monday ordered the release of Mr Saab from the Island’s detention and awarded him $200,000 as compensation for his ‘illegal arrest and detention.’


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